SOL KADI - A Savoury Konkan Beverage Made From The Kokum Fruit
Before we introduce you to this refreshing drink made from a fruit native to the Western ghats of India, here is a little bit about kokum, botanically known as Garcina Indica.
Kokum is a small reddish fruit that is very sour (likened to the sourness of gooseberries at first bite, if you have ever tasted them) and is used in its dried form to add that very sour element to curries. We add dried kokum to many a fish or prawn curry, and it stews away, releasing its sour power in a pleasant fashion.
Kokum has many health benefits, most of which we won't delve into, except for one - it acts as a cooling agent for the body and protects the skin from the sun. Quite fitting properties when considering that this fruit is native to regions of India which experience sweltering summers.
The seeds of the fruit are boiled and used to prepare kokum butter, which acts as a soothing balm for rashes and chaffed or burned skin.
If you are daring enough to try this drink, served in most authentic Goan restaurants alongside your meal, then here is a simple recipe for you to follow. If savoury drinks aren't quite suitable to your palate, you can purchase ready-made kokum syrup which may be available at your local Indian grocer, and make a cordial-like drink from it.
Whether you swear by sweet or savoury, let us know how you go with it by posting a comment below!
- Soak 20 pieces of dried Kokum, Garcina Indica, (available at Indian grocery stores) in a cup of hot water for a minimum of 30 minutes.
- When ready to serve, pour soaked kokum with water in a blender with
½ tsp asafoetida, 10g fresh ginger and 1 green chilli (optional). Strain into a jug.
- Now add 400ml coconut milk, and 200ml water. Stir in 1tsp black salt/sea salt/ (adjust according to your taste.
- Pour into 4 glasses and garnish with a few coriander leaves.
- Serve at room temperature or chilled.
All the ingredients required to make sol kadi